Meet The Team

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You are only ever as good as your team & this is a great team

Postdoctoral Researchers

Dr. John J. Hayward


(2018-)

Dr. Samuel Aremu
(2018-)
Dr. Bukola Aremu
(2018-)
Dr. Farsheed Shahbazi 


(2019-)

Dr. Nazir Tahir
(2019-)
Dr. Ronnie Banerjee 
(2019-)
Dr. Maryam Kosar
(2020-)
Dr. Atefe Ghodrati
(2020-)
Dr. Muhammad Usman Mirza


(2020-)

 
Dr. Michael J. Krause
(2021-)
 
 
Dr. Abd Al-Aziz Abu-Saleh

(2021-)

 
 
Dr. Purshotam Sharma

(2021-)

 
 
Dr. Sarfraz Ahmad

(2021-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Ezequiel Silva Nigenda

(2022-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Kasra Razmkhah

(2022-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Joseph Bautista

(2022-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Mary Egbuta

(2022-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dr. Farnaz Abed Ashtiani

(2022-)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Doctoral Students

Daniel Meister
(2016-)
Mana Dashti
(2017-)
Michael Reynolds
(2017-)
Sanaz Nadimi
(2019-)
Sarah Nasri


(2020-)

 
Samra Khan
(2020-)
Sanam Mohammadzadeh

(2020-)

Behzad Bolandi
(2020-)
Sama Dehghan
(2021-)
Atousa Ahmadi

(2021-)

Elham Pourian
(2021-)
Peihan Xu

(2020-)

Masters Students

İrem Şimşek

(2021-)

 
Jhanielle James

(2022-)

 

Visiting Scholars

Mahasin Al-Shabi

(2019-)

Undergraduate Researchers

Sara Alabed


(2022)

 
Sukhleen Nagra


(2023)

 
Victoria Kis
(2023)
Chelsea Ymana

(2023)

 
Noah Robinson

(2023)

 
Will Hosie


(2023)

 
Maria Rueda

(2023)

 
Jason Wong


(2023)

 
Ryan Salama
(2023)
Maria Meer


(2023)

 
Jessica Dennison


(2023)

 
Sahana Kalidindi


(2024)

 
Fadi Naom


(2024)

 
Isaac Gagnier


(2024)

 
Jaxon Laramie


(2024)

 
Chitra Bidlon


(2024)

 
Sophia Campana


(2024)

 
Adam Salloum


(2024)

 
Deya’a Almasri


(2024)

 
Mohamad El Mais


(2024)

 
Ayesha Sayyeda


(2025)

 
Teagan Kukhta


(2025)

 
Laith Almasri


(2025)

 
Dami Babs-Olorunfemi


(2025)

 
Nerojini Nehruji


(2025)

 
Alex Stoinescu


(2025)

 
Alex Sabadus


(2025)

 
Kaitlin Ferraro


(2026)

 
Jonathan Houser


(2026)

 
Jaden Burke


(2026)

 
Treasure Moriyo


(2027)

 
Liz Sylvestre


(2027)

 
Connor Filiault


(2027)

 
Vivian Peng


(2027)

 
Julia Rubino


(2027)

 
Joseph O’Neil


(2027)

 
Sofia Milicia


(2027)

 

High-School Researchers & Students

Madison Beltran

(August 2022-Present)

 Volunteer 

 

Research Staff

Imran Ahmad Khan

(2021-)

 
Saeed Velayati

 

(2021-)

 
Angela Mulcaster

(2022-)

 
Aiyireti (Dina) Dilinaer

(2018-)

 

Alumni

Postdocs & Research Associates

Dr. N. Kodiah Beyeh

(April 2017-July 2018)

Dr. Christopher Dieni
(April 2018-June 2019)
Dr. Martin Bakht


(Nov 2019- Jan 2020)

Dr. Ashley Dadalt

(Dec 2020- Feb 2022)

Dr. Kanchan Sinha Roy

(Dec 2021- Feb 2022)

Dr. Neda Mashhadi

(Oct 2020- Aug 2022)

Dr. Fraser Pick

(Sep 2018- Mar 2022)

Co-founder

Spoitz Enterprises Inc.

Dr. Nazanin Taimoory


(Jul 2016- Oct 2022)

Current position:

Senior scientist

NuChem, Montreal

Former Grad Students

Emmanuel Perez Escalante

(July 2019-December 2019)

 
Dominique Leckie

 (September 2016-July 2017)

Xiao Yu

(2018-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

Doctoral Student

(McMaster University)

 
Iraj Sadraei

(2016-2020)

 

Current Position:

 
 

NuChem Therapeutics

 

(Montreal)

 
Samaneh Mehri

(2019-2021)


Current Position:

 
 

Doctoral Student

 

(UAB Alabama)

 
Susanna Vu

(2020-2022)

 

Current Position:

Doctoral Student

(Concordia University)

Paul Tucci

(2020-2022)

 

Former Undergrad Students

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Eileen-Yunjung O

(2017 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Unknown

 
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Vrunjal Gandhi

(2017 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Scientist, Apotex

 
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Angela Simonovski

(2017 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Pharmacy Student

 

(University of Queensland,

 

Australia)

 
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Adan Sadiq Ahmed

(2016 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical Professional Intern &

 

Teacher at a private school

 

(Windsor)

 
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Adan Sadiq Ahmed

(2016 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical Professional Intern &

 

Teacher at a private school

 

(Windsor)

 
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Emmanuel Igbokwe

(2016 – 2017)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(University of Toronto)

 
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Rohaila Zehra

(2017 – 2018)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Quality Assurance Scientist

 

Accuristix

 
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Zachary Rezler

(2018 – 2018)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(McMaster University)

 
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Rose Fayoumi

(2016 – 2018)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Unknown

 
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Jonathan Franke

(2018 – 2018)

 

Current Position:

 

 

MSc. Chemical Biology

 

Student at HKI

 

(Germany)

 
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Jana Khanafer

(2018 – 2018)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Advanced Foot and Brace

 

(Windsor)

 
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Anthony Chifor

(2017 – 2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Research Assistant

 

(Wayne State University)

 
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Michael Qadish

(2017 – 2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(University of Toronto)

 
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Liam LeClair

(2018 – 2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Professional Lacrosse Player

 

Medical Student

 

(Western University,

 

Windsor Campus)

 
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Mansi Arora

(2018 – 2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student in Health and

 

Biomedical Science

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Ashutosh Agrahari

(2019 – 2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Graduate Student

 

(Purdue University)

 
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Asma Ghafoor

(2017-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(McMaster University)

 
Jonathan Chiaramonte

(2018-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Deceased

 
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Greg Yousif

(2016-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School, Schiluch School

 

(University of Western Ontario)

 
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Advait Desai

(2016-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School, Schiluch School

 

(University of Western Ontario)

 
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Mihir Modi

(2018-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student in Health

 

& Biomedical Science

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Marta Haireek

(2018-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student in Molecular Biology

 

and Biotechnology

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Fabiola Villareal

(2019-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student

 

(ITESM, Mexico)

 
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Tarasha Sharma

(2019-2019)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student in Biopharmaceutical

 

Science

 

(University of Ottawa)

 
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Maya Sutherland

(2019-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Student in Health &

 

Biomedical Science

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Thomson Ly

(2017-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Dental School

 

(University of Western Ontario)

 
Carmen Ly

(2017-2020)

 

 

 

 
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Peter Bahnam

(2017-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Pharmacist’s Assistant

 

 
Victoria Grandi

(2018-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(University of British Columbia)

 
Joy-Lynn Kobti

(2017-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, Vukotic Lab

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Maksmilian Dzioura

(2018-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

MSc. Student, Marquardt Group

 

(University of Windsor)

 
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Ali Barazi

(2017-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(Schulich Western,

 

Windsor Campus)

 
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Aman Sehmbi

(2017-2020)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(University of Toronto)

 
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Michelle Park

(2019-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Undergrad Student, Fritz Group

 

(University of Windsor)

 
Emma Dennison

(2017-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(Queen’s University)

 
Sabrina Piazza

(2017-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Pharmacy School

 

(University of British Columbia)

 
Khushali Parikh

(2018-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, Bain Group

 

(University of Windsor)

 
Sara Knezevic

(2018-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, the D’Costa Group

 

(University of Ottawa)

 
Lavleen Mader

(2018-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, Keillor Group

 

(University of Ottawa)

 
Maria Buglisi

(2018-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Walmart Canada

 
Teodora Secara

(2017-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

MSc Medical Science

 

(University of Toronto)

 
Nour Elkott

(2018-2021)

 

Current Position:

 

 

AI Software Development

 

(Utah, USA)

 
Chloe Dickson

(2021-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Undergrad Student

 

University of Windsor

 
Abdulrahman Aljoudi

(2018-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Undergrad Student

 

University of Windsor

 
A.J. Villas

(2021-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Undergrad Student

 

University of Windsor

 
Emma Flynn

(2018-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Undergrad Student

 

University of Windsor

 
Kaitlyn Breault

(2019-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, Magolan Group

 

(McMaster University)

 
Keith Wong

(2019-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Medical School

 

(University of Ottawa)

 
Moutasem Seifi

(2021-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student, Rondeau-Gagné

 

Group

 

(University of Windsor)

 
Vagisha Aggarwal

(2021-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student,

 
Waffa Bakheet

(2019-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

Grad Student

 

 
Braedan Breault

(2022-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

 
Guntaas Oberoi

(2022-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

 

 
Brad Murphy

(2022-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

Undergrad student,

 

University of Windsor

 

 

 
Jordyn Doherty

(2021-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

Undergrad student

 

University of Windsor

 

 
Linda Nguyen

(2022-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

Undergrad student

 

University of Windsor

 

 
Ana Carolina Terso Ventura


(2022-2022)

 

Current Position:

 

Undergrad student

 

State University of Ponta Grossa

Caroline Gaibel


(2022-2022)

Current Position:

Undergrad student

Georg-August University

Farshad Murtada


(2021-2022)

Current Position:

Doctoral Student, University of Toronto

Biomedical Engineering

 
Afeson Beyene


(2018-2022)

Current position:

Unknown

 
Adam Gaisinsky

 

(2022-2022)

Current Position: 

Undergrad student 

University of Windsor

Sona Regonda


(2022-2022)

Current Position:

Undergrad student

University of Windsor

 

Former High-School Researchers

Anumita Jain

(June 2019 – July 2020)

 
Catherine Lalman

 (June 2018 – July 2019)

Owen Diesenhaus

(July 2020-June 2022)

 Current position:

Undergrad Student

Electrical Engineering

University of Wisconsin-Madison 

 

Former Research Staff

Mohamad Rasizadeh

(2019-2021)

 

Jonathan Chiaramonte (2019-2020)

B.Sc. University of Windsor (Trant Team 2018-2019) Jonathan was born in Windsor and grew up in Owen Sound before coming back to the University of Windsor for his B.Sc. in Biochemistry (2014-2019). His undergraduate research includes a year volunteering for Dr. Koschinsky and Dr. Boffa under the supervision of Dr. Scipione. He then joined Dr. Trant’s research group in organic synthesis (2018), specifically working towards the synthesis of “acetal-free” carbohydrates (2018-19). His undergraduate research included the synthesis of a glucose bio-probe, which can be used to monitor malignant cells due to their preference for aerobic glycolysis. The second project in Jonathan’s undergraduate research dealt with the induction of asymmetry in the Diels-Alder reaction – a possible avenue towards the synthesis of “acetal-free” carbohydrate mimics. His graduate work focused on further developing these technologies to generate innovative cancer vaccines. Outside the lab, Jonathan’s interests included various sports, pharmacology, toxicology, and drug design. Jonathan passed away in an accident on New Year's Day 2020. Jon was an exceptonally promising researcher and we were both extremely excited about his progress and the new projects he was taking on. He will be greatly missed by all of us in the Team. His work and contributions to the group during his time with us are honoured and will be remembered.

Dr. John J. Hayward

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2018-)

 B.A./M.Sci. University of Cambridge (UK)  Ph.D. University of Cambridge (UK)  PDF University of Windsor  PDF Brock University John is a Brit by birth, but has since become a Canadian Permanent Resident. He gained all his degrees from the University of Cambridge, with his PhD earned under the supervision of Prof. Steve Ley FRS CBE. His PhD studies covered a diverse array of topics, from organocatalysis, flow chemistry and microwave-assisted organic synthesis to the study of non-covalent interactions in the crystalline state. Feeling that a this diverse experience of chemistry was the way forward, he joined the group of Dr Jeremy Rawson, Chair in Molecular Materials at the University of Windsor, where he focussed on a variety of organo-main group and solid state/materials research topics. A productive year with Dr Melanie Pilkington at Brock University followed, focussing on ligand design for transition metal complexes. Starting to yearn for some organic synthesis, he moved across campus to join Prof. Tomáš Hudlický’s group. Since late 2016 he has been back in Windsor, with research positions in the computational enzymology group of Dr James Gauld and now as part of the Trant Team. Concurrent to this he has had several teaching appointments at the University of Windsor, for which he has been awarded the UWSA and Ontario Universities Student Alliance Teaching Awards. John’s research interests are as diverse as his chemical biography would suggest, and include the application of enabling technologies to discover new reactions in organic (and inorganic) synthesis, the application of novel reactivity to compounds of biological interest and the study of intermolecular forces by computational and crystallographic means. This makes him a good match with John T. Some more self-aggrandisement can be found on the web at www.john-hayward.net.

Dr. Oluwole Samuel Aremu

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2018-)

   B.Tech. (Hons) Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, (Nigeria) 
   M.Sc. University of Ibadan (Nigeria)
   Ph.D. University of KwaZulu-Natal, (Durban, South Africa)
   PDF North-West University (Mafikeng, South Africa)
   PDF Linnaeus University (Kalmar, Sweden)

      Samuel was born in Ibadan, Nigeria, and obtained his B.Tech. (Hons.) in Pure and Applied Chemistry from Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) Ogbomoso, Nigeria, and his Master’s degree in Organic Chemistry at the University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria. He taught as an Organic Chemistry lecturer at Bowen University, Iwo, Nigeria, before completing his doctoral degree at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa under the supervision of Prof. Neil Koorbanally. His doctoral research was on the synthesis, characterization and biological evaluation of novel pyrimidine derivatives. After completing his PhD, he obtained ahighly competititive  South Africa National Research Foundation grant (Postdoctoral fellowship for DST Innovation) for two years at North-West University with Prof. Lebogang Katata-Seru, where he works on the synthesis, characterization and application of polymeric nanoparticles for an Anti-HIV drug delivery system. He also works as a PDF at Linnaeus University, Kalmar, Sweden with Prof. Ian Nicholls on the synthesis of molecular imprinted polymers and on computational chemistry. His research interests focus broadly on the organic synthesis of bioactive molecules, isolation and synthesis of natural products, the development of green chemistry methodologies, and materials science. He will be working on the syntheses of biologically active carbohydrates derivatives and the computational modelling of cannabinoid-receptor interactions during his time with the Trant Team at the University of Windsor.

Dr. Bukola Rhoda Aremu

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2018-)

B.Tech. (Hons) Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, (Nigeria) 
M.Sc. Federal University of Agriculture (Abeokuota, Nigeria)
Ph.D. North-West University, (Mafikeng, South Africa)
PDF North-West University (Mafikeng, South Africa)

Bukola graduated in 2001 with a B.Tech. (Hons.) in Pure and Applied Biology from the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (Nigeria) and MSc. in Genetics from the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (Nigeria) in 2006. She lectured at Bowen University from 2008 till 2012 before she relocated to the North-West University in Mafikeng, South Africa to pursue her PhD with Prof. Olubukola Oluranti Babalola in molecular biotechnology developing an efficient rapid method to detect marcegens in exportable vegetables. After defending her thesis in 2016, she stayed with Prof. Babalola’s group to work on the interactions between maize and its pathogens, using genomic and proteomic data to better define the response to infection. She obtained a highly competititive South Africa National Research Foundation PDF grant, and is using its mobility to work with Dr. Trant’s team on the proteomic correlations of the tumour-associated carbohydrate antigens.

Dr. Farsheed Shahbazi Raz

Postdoctoral Researcher
(2019-)
B.Sc. Ardabil University (Iran) 
M.Sc. University of Tabriz (Iran)
Ph.D. Shahid Beheshti University (Iran)
 
Farsheed was born and lived in Ardabil, the coldest city in Iran, until the end of his undergraduate studies.  He completed his Master’s degree in Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Tabriz, Iran, under the supervision of Prof. Ali Akbar Khandar. In 2016, he completed his doctorate at Shahid Beheshti University, Iran, where he conducted theoretical calculations to design spin crossover complexes under the supervision of Prof. Naser Safari. After his PhD he spent two years as the Local R&D Manager for MSM United Inc, a Canadian cosmetic company, in the Middle East.  His research interests focus on the use of computational chemistry for determining peptide function employing unnatural amino acids. In his spare time Farsheed enjoys being with his family, outdoor activities, Kickboxing, and traveling. As a member of the Trant Team, he will be working on the development of artificial amino acids for autoimmune disease treatments.

Dr. Nazir Tahir

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2019-)

Co-supervised with Prof. Rondeau-Gagné

B.Sc. Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan (Pakistan)
M.Sc. University of Technology Braunschweig (Germany, Prof. P. Mischnick)
Ph.D. University of Technology Braunschweig (Germany, Prof. P. Mischnick)
PDF Université du Québec à Montréal (Prof. R. Roy)
PDA University of Windsor (Prof. S. Rondeau-Gagné and H.S. Eichhorn)
 

Nazir was born in Vehari, Pakistan. He obtained his B.Sc. in chemistry from Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan, Pakistan. Afterwards, he got his MSc and PhD degrees from University of Technology (Technische Universität) Braunschweig, commonly referred to as TU Braunschweig, the oldest Technische Universität in Germany founded in 1745, with Prof. Petra Mischnick. His PhD research focused on the synthesis of alkynyl ethers of dextrans as intermediates for new functional biopolymers and detailed characterization and applications of functionalized biopolymers e.g. for immobilization of enzymes and biocatalysis. After graduation, he worked at different universities in Europe, South Korea working on different research projects mainly in the field of synthetic organic chemistry, polymer chemistry and organic electronics. In 2015, he moved to Canada where he worked on the synthesis and applications of dendrons and dendrimers after joining the research group of Prof. René Roy at the Université du Québec à Montréal. In 2017, he joined research groups of Prof. Rondeau-Gagne and Prof. Holger Eichhorn and worked on the topochemical polymerization of nematic tetraazaporphyrin derivatives for the preparation of soluble polydiacetylene nanowires and liquid crystals for potential applications in organic electronics. In the mean time, also he worked on other related topics like synthesis of functional AuNPs stabilized by topochemical polymerization of diacetylene and synthesis of functional dendrimers using “onion-peel” method etc. Recently, he joined a collaborative project between Dr. Trant, Dr. Rondeau-Gagné and as a member of the Trant Team, he will be working on the process development of neutraceutical formulation for soft-gels and related topics Apparently he has no interests outside of the lab.

Dr. Abhinandan (Ronnie) Banerjee

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2019-)

B.Sc. (Chemistry Hons.) – Jadavpur University, Kolkata, India 
M.Sc. (Chemistry) – IIT Kharagpur, India (Prof. P. Pramanik).
Ph.D. University of Saskatchewan (Prof. R. Scott) 
PDF  University of Calgary (Prof. S. Trudel) Eyes High Fellow.
 

Ronnie’s research interests lie in the design, synthesis, characterization, and applications of novel nanoscaled composite materials. After completing his M.Sc. at IIT Kharagpur working with Prof. P. Pramanik on developing novel morphological variations of nano-phospors, Ronnie was awarded a Dean’s Fellowship at the University of Saskatchewan to do a doctoral degree with Prof. Robert W. J. Scott on catalytic nanocomposites in tetraalkylphosphonium ionic liquid matrices. This gave Ronnie a chance to work at the Canadian Light Source, Canada’s only second generation synchrotron. Ronnie received research funding from VWR, Saskatchewan Innovation and Opportunity Fellowship, and the Gerhard Herzberg Award, named in honor of, and awarded by the family of, Nobel Laureate Prof. Gerhard Herzberg. Following graudation, Ronnie was awarded the highly prestigious Eyes High PDF at the University of Calgary, where he worked with Prof. Simon Trudel , director of the nanoscience program at UCalgary, on multifunctional bionanoprobes. This lead to a patent on a novel bionanoprobe that combines “aggregation induced emission” with MRI activity. Ronnie hopes to continue gaining fresh insights into the fascinating world of nanomaterials and their role in the universal human aspiration for comfort, if not happiness, by joining the Trant Team to work on innovative nanoformulations. Ronnie also enjoys the Golden age mysteries, classical music including bel canto and opera comique, art, cooking, and the great indoors.

Dr. Maryam Kosar

Postdoctoral Researcher
(2020-)
B.Sc. (Applied Chemistry) – Isfahan University of Technology (Iran)
M.Sc. (Physical Chemistry) – University of Isfahan (Iran)
Ph.D. (Physical Chemistry) – Shahid Beheshti University, (Iran)
PDF Isfahan University of Medical Science, (Iran)
PDF Ontario Tech University
 
Maryam was born in Tehran, Iran. She then moved to Isfahan where she attended Isfahan University of Technology to obtain her B.Sc. in applied chemistry and the University of Isfahan for her M.Sc. in physical chemistry. During her master’s, she got experience in the synthesis and characterization of inorganic nanoparticles. After graduation, she started to work as a quality control manager at a cosmetics company where she did research along with conducting chemical and microbial tests. As the work did not satisfy her and she missed research and studying, she decided to continue her studies and started a PhD in her favorite field: computational physical chemistry. During her PhD she conducted molecular dynamics simulations of the flow of particles in nanotori, extremely interesting nanostructures, in the presence of circularly polarized light. She did her PhD project at the University of Isfahan, Iran under the supervision of Prof. H. Sabzyan, while the PhD degree itself was issued by Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran. After completing her PhD, she started to work as a researcher and later as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Isfahan and Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, respectively, continuing her computational studies. In 2018, she moved to Canada to for a postdoctoral position at Ontario Tech University under the supervision of Dr. Hendrick W. deHaan. In the one-year postdoc., she was involved in projects doing molecular dynamics simulations of protein-ligand interactions,  and also studied protein translocation in a nanopore using DFT calculations. As a member of the Trant Team, she will be working on the computational studies related to protein-ligand interactions with an industrial partner, and will also be revisiting her love of theoretical materials science. In her spare time, she enjoys nature, travelling, watching movies, reading, listening to music and cooking.

Dr. Atefe Ghodrati

Postdoctoral Researcher
 

(2019-2021)

Atefe was born in a city in Mazandaran, Iran. She graduated in Applied Chemistry and then successfully obtained her Masters degree in Electrochemistry; both at Mazandaran University. Her Master’s thesis concerned the design and preparation of modified electrodes and their application in electro-catalytic oxidation. After her degree, she started teaching analytical chemistry at Azad university of Amol. Life being life, she then got married and moved to Tehran leaving her home town behind. She says she was fortunate enough to receive a bursary from Ministry of Health and Medical Education to pursue her PhD in Medicinal Chemistry at University of Tehran starting in 2015. But really, she earned it through her strong track record. She is continuing this degree, and she is also collaborating closely with the Hezare Sevom Company to produce electronic content for chemical engineering students. She has also been active in the research and development’s unit of the Parsian Pharmaceutical Company as a researcher in the field of the synthesis of peptides, peptidomimetics and purification of peptides with preparative HPLC which is directly associated with her PhD research into the design of beta-secretase inhibitors. She is with the Trant Team for an 18-month research sabatical where she will join the team working in designing novel peptide therapies for autoimmune diseases with a special focus on arthritis.

Dr. Muhammad Usman Mirza

Postdotoral Researcher
(2020-)

M-Phil. Quaid-i-Azam University (Pakistan)

Ph.D. University of Leuven, (Belgium)

 

Muhammad Usman Mirza graduated from the National Centre for Bioinformatics, Quaid-i-Azam University, Pakistan. Afterwards, he joined the Center for Research in Molecular Medicine, at the University of Lahore as a research associate and participated in several projects and developed a series of close collaborative relationships. In 2016, he was awarded the prestigious IRO Doctoral Fellowship from KU Leuven, Belgium and pursued doctoral studies with Prof. Matheus Froeyen at the Rega Institute for Medical Research. He obtained his PhD degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2020. During his career, his primary interest has been in interdisciplinary research focused on the investigation of molecular mechanisms of bio-molecular interactions by computational methods and the discovery of biologically active compounds with promising pharmacological properties using ligand- and structure-based methods. He has experience in molecular modelling and has completed a number of projects, independently or in collaboration. His multipronged research has already identified very selective HIV entry inhibitors, potent Zika protease inhibitors, and a few potential acetylcholine esterase inhibitors. After the submission of his PhD thesis, he was offered a postdoc position in Trant Team, where he will focus on the design and discovery of novel antiviral agents and the prediction of pharmacological properties using computational techniques. This will tie in with ongoing drug discovery work within the lab, and he is excited to be working directly alongside a team of synthetic chemists and molecular biologists to advance the hit-to-lead optimization stage of drug discovery. He is a friendly guy who loves to play almost every racket sport but quite good in Tennis, and has a strong amateur interest in swimming and cricket. He loves to hear the call of the mountains, and has a passion for camping. Essex county is apparently quite lacking in the former, although camping in Canada has been a long-term goal. Sometimes he makes vlogs of travel and food.

Dr. Michael J. Krause

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2021-)

Hon. B.Sc. University of Toronto at Mississauga

M.Sc. University of Guelph

Ph.D. Western University

Mike was born in Richmond Hill ON and grew up near Orangeville ON where he attended Mayfield Secondary School in north Brampton. Towards the end of high school Mike realized he was totally fascinated and in love with chemicals, chemistry, Bunsen burners, and torches of any kind. Through university Mike primarily studied inorganic chemistry, and on the side has been doing scientific glassblowing since 2003. He completed his BSc at the University of Toronto, Mississauga.

Mike studied under Dr. Michael Denk at the University of Guelph for an MSc where he worked with phosphenium cations to attempt the synthesis of a stable PN triple bonds and make PN-heterocycles. Mike then moved to London ON and began studying and synthesizing hyper – coordinate Germanium complexes under the supervision of Dr. Kim Baines at Western University. Mike synthesized numerous organogermane compounds, most interestingly GeH4 (germane) from hyper – coordinate Germanium complexes. Following graduation, Mike worked on polyurethane research in industry and developed new and better polyols for the synthesis of polyurethanes. While this research was very interesting and Mike learned a tremendous amount about materials science, Mike realized he really missed organic synthesis and made the move to join the Trant team starting in March 2021.

Mike is a very lucky guy in his personal life with awesome family and friends. He currently lives in London ON (soon to be Chatham ON) with his amazing and beautiful wife Geraldina (who among many other talents is a florist and professional organizer) and his semi – crazy but awesome Australian cattle dog Buddy.

Dr. Abd Al-Aziz Abu-Saleh
Postdoctoral Researcher

(2021-)

B.Sc. Al-Hussein Bin Talal University (Jordan)
M.Sc. The University of Jordan (Jordan)
Ph.D. Memorial University (Canada)
PDF University of Windsor

 

Aziz received his B.Sc. in Chemistry with First-Class Standing from Al-Hussein Bin Talal University (Jordan) in 2011. As an undergraduate, he worked in the area of nanoparticles synthesis and their use for the extraction of heavy metals. In 2015, Aziz got his M.Sc. from the University of Jordan. His thesis title was “Mechanistic Study of the Deamination Reaction of Melamine: A Computational Study” under Prof. Mansour Almatarneh’s supervision. Afterward, Aziz moved to Memorial University to carry out PhD research on Computer Modeling and Simulations of Biological Systems under the supervision of Prof. Raymond Poirier. Aziz is currently interested in computational and theoretical tools for drug design and development. Understanding the mechanism of biological systems in atomistic details and predicting the thermodynamics and kinetics of the enzyme−substrate catalysis can help us to develop drugs with an improved therapeutic profile and reduced toxicity. The molecular modeling and simulations will provide an in-depth description of enzyme−inhibitor properties, helping experimentalists to understand the mechanisms behind the observed effects and to identify structural improvements for therapeutics at the molecular level. Aziz is also interested in machine learning and its applications to solve chemical problems. Aziz enjoys outdoor activities, working out, gardening, playing soccer, and traveling.

Dr. Purshotam Sharma
Postdoctoral Researcher

(2021-)

B.Sc. – Panjab University (India)
M. Sc. Panjab University (India)
PhD. International Institute of Information Technology (India)
PDF- University of Lethbridge (Alberta)
DST INSPIRE Faculty Awardee- Central University of Punjab (India)

Purshotam is a computational chemist by training. He completed his PhD in Computational Chemistry in India and moved to Canada for postdoctoral studies. It was at that time he became a permanent resident of Canada. His handsome son, Aarav was also born when he was a postdoc in Canada. Later, he moved to India for joining the DST INSPIRE Faculty position, and then moved to the position of UGC Assistant Professor at the Department of Chemistry, Panjab University. He was a Visiting Professor twice at the University of Lethbridge (in 2017 and 2018). He has handled two research projects in India and have two PhD students have finished their training with him. As a member of Trant team, he is working on Computational Aided Drug Design and testing of a specific class of G-protein coupled receptors.

Dr. Sarfraz Ahmad

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2021-)

BSc. University of Punjab (Pakistan)
MSc. University of Punjab (Pakistan)
Ph.D. Karl Franzens University (Austria)
Assistant Prof. University of Lahore (Pakistan)
Senior Lecturer, Malaya University (Malaysia)
PDF University of Windsor


Sarfraz did his BSc (2001) and MSc (2004) degrees from the University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan. Since the start, he has been inquisitive in the drug discovery domain. During his MSc he synthesized new pyrazinamide derivatives active against tuberculosis. In 2008, he secured a fully-funded scholarship for overseas PhD studies and joined the lab of Dr Werner Seebacher at the Karl Franzens University, Graz, Austria. During PhD, he worked on the synthesis and structural elucidation of novel bicyclic amines, 5-amino-azabicyclo[3.2.2]nonanes,  a new class of compounds active against malaria and sleeping sickness. He achieved PhD in Pharmaceutical Chemistry (2012) with distinction.  After his PhD, he returned and joined the University of Lahore in the same year as an assistant professor. He established the Chemical Biology/Drug Discovery Lab and started his research project for the discovery of novel Hsp90 inhibitors for cancer therapy. Alongside, he also worked on natural product extraction and bioautographic isolation of AChE inhibitors. At the start of 2019, he joined the Department of Chemistry at the Malaya University, Malaysia. In this stay, he worked on discovering novel antiviral, anticancer, and anti-neurodegeneration compounds.
His skillset involves computer-aided drug discovery, organic synthesis, and biological assays.
Apart from research, he loves to do 4×4 off-roading and online gaming.

Dr. Ezequiel Silva Nigenda
Postdoctoral Researcher

(2021-)

B.Sc. Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México (Mex)
M.Sc. Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México (Mex)
Ph.D. University of Glasgow (UK)

Ezequiel is a Mexican chemist whose motivation to understand and treat diseases came early in his life since his parents (both with medical degrees) showed him a way to help society. After obtaining his undergraduate degrees in Mexico, he moved to the city of Glasgow to pursue a PhD in the groups of Prof. Rudi Marquez and moving to Prof. Robert Liskamp´s once the Marquez´s moved from the University. His experience with multicultural groups has given him tools to understand how different visions and backgrounds converge to achieve the same goals.
His main research interest lies in the use of organic chemistry for the development of treatments and diagnosis tools for various diseases (previous work on carbohydrate, peptide and small molecule chemistry applied for tropical diseases, antimicrobial development and Drug Delivery Systems).
Outside the lab he enjoys music (probably way too much). Whether at a classical music concert or a metal gig, he shares the idea that life without music should not be called life.

Dr. Kasra Razmkhah

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2022-)

B.Sc. Azad University of Damghan (Iran)
M.Sc./Ph.D. University of Warwick (UK)
PDF University of Warwick (UK)
PDF University of Tehran (Iran)


Kasra completed his BSc in applied chemistry at the Azad University of Damghan before moving to the UK to pass a master’ course in “instrumental, analytical methods in biological and environmental chemistry” at the University of Warwick. Being intrigued by spectroscopy, he decided to continue his studies as a PhD student in biophysical chemistry at Professor Alison Rodger’s group, where he later worked as a lab technician and postdoctoral fellow. During his time at Warwick, he managed to introduce a new Raman spectroscopy technique, develop a new fluorescence linear dichroism spectroscopy technique, optimise a molecular alignment technique for small polar molecules, and publish some articles on spectroscopic signatures of small molecules. Kasra, then, moved back to Iran to complete his compulsory national service. He was permitted to conduct research on “extracting snake venoms’ key peptides and proteins using 2-D electrophoresis and TOF-TOF mass spectrometry” at AJA University of Medical Sciences while working as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Tehran. At the University of Tehran, he mainly worked on using solid-phase extraction of trace pollutants in milk and sewage water, however, he also conducted localised surface plasmon resonance experiments on psychoactive drugs using gold nanoparticles and a smartphone platform.

Dr. Joseph Bautista

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2022-)

B.Sc./M.Sc. Toronto Metropolitan University

Ph.D. Memorial University of Newfoundland

PDF University of Windsor



Joseph worked on numerous environmental projects in Ontario, Canada from invasive species research to monitoring trace analytes at Toronto Metropolitan University, TMU (formerly Ryerson University). Working with his M.Sc. supervisor Dr. Andrew Laursen (TMU), he became a certified SCUBA diver to monitor lake sediment denitrification rates and their effects on nitrous oxide greenhouse gases. He then joined Dr. Cora Young’s (presently York University Guy Warwick Rogers Chair in Chemistry) research group at Memorial University of Newfoundland where he developed new methods for the collection and analysis of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE) and their natural analogues from building rooftop aerosols and Atlantic fish livers. He has recently redirected his analytical chemistry interests into cannabis research through a PDF with Dr. Simon Rondeau-Gagné (University of Windsor) and CannaLabs Inc. (London, Ont), where he currently continues this cannabis research among other related analytical exploits with Dr. John Trant.

Joseph spends his time as a bicycle mechanic at a local bike co-op when he isn’t playing softball, watching and reading about sports and science, listening to science podcasts, and thinking about what a Star Trek StarFleet Captain would say.

Dr. Mary Egbuta

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2022-)

B.Sc. Nnamdi Azikiwe University (Nigeria)
M.tech. University of Johannesburg (South Africa)
Ph.D. Southern Cross University (Australia)


Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Mary completed her Bachelor of Science degree (BSc) in Applied Biochemistry from Nnamdi Azikiwe University Awka, Anambra state, Nigeria. She has a master’s degree in Biomedical Technology from University of Johannesburg, South Africa, where she worked on Mycotoxins analyses in food products. Mary has extensive knowledge on extraction, quantification, and evaluation of toxicity of mycotoxins present in different food products and was privileged to work under the supervision of one of the renowned professors of Mycotoxins, Prof Mike Dutton.

Due to her quest for knowledge, she went ahead to do a PhD study in Plant Science at Southern Cross Plant Science Research unit of Southern Cross university, NSW, Australia. In her PhD study, Mary investigated the presence of valuable volatile extractives in cotton gin trash, a collaborative work with the Cotton Research Development Corporation, Australia. After her PhD study, due to her remarkable performance, the supervisor recommended her to Plant Science department for a position and she was offered a role as an Analytical Officer with the Analytical Research Laboratory, Southern Cross University. In this role, she performed quality control analysis of plant products for industries in the pharmaceutical and agricultural sectors. Mary also worked on a wide range of natural products including fatty acids, terpenes, sterols, and cannabinoids. An experience she brings along with her to the Trant Research team at the University of Windsor.

https://twitter.com/mary_egbuta

https://www.linkedin.com/in/mary-egbuta-phd-629a2520/

Dr. Farnaz Abed Ashtiani

Postdoctoral Researcher

(2022-)

B.Sc.   University of Tabriz, Iran
M.Sc.  Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Malaysia
Ph.D.   Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Malaysia
PDF     University of Tabriz, Iran


Farnaz was born in Tabriz, Iran. She received her B.Sc. in Plant Protection from University of Tabriz, where she was acknowledged with a Chancellor’s commendation for her outstanding performance. Farnaz obtained her M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Plant Pathology from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) under the supervision of Dr. Jugah Kadir and she was a recipient of a competitive international graduate research fellowship (IGRF) for her Ph.D. research at UPM with the focus on molecular identification and genetic diversity assessment of fungal isolates causing rice blast disease. Upon graduating from Ph.D., she received postdoctoral fellowship offered by Iran’s National Elites Foundation and was appointed as a PDF in Prof. Mahdi Arzanlou’s lab at the Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tabriz, Iran from 2016 to 2020. She worked on morphological and molecular identification of plant pathogenic fungi, their species diversity, population structure and genetic characterization as well as biocontrol of plant diseases. Farnaz was a lecturer at University of Applied Science and Technology in Tabriz, Iran from 2018 to 2022 where she was awarded as distinguished lecturer and also received a commendation for her excellent performance in online teaching. As a member of Dr. Trant’s team, Farnaz is collaborating with Dr. Aremu on antimicrobial screening project.

Daniel Meister

Doctoral Student
Ontario Graduate Scholar

(2016-)

B.Sc. University of Windsor

Daniel was born in Israel and raised in Windsor. He completed his Honours Biochemistry with Thesis degree at the University of Windsor in 2016. During his undergraduate studies his research, on the computational study of Isoleucyl-tRNA synthetase and its editing mechanisms, was supervised by Dr. James W. Gauld. Daniel joined the Trant Team as a founding member in September 2016. His graduate research focuses on the rational computational design of novel amino acids, their synthesis and their incorporation into peptides for use as therapeutics for auto-immune diseases. Outside of chemistry, Daniel enjoys reading, watching movies, hiking and spending time with family and friends.

Mana Dashti

Doctoral Student
Trillium Scholar

(2017-)

B.Sc. Kharazmi University, Tehran (Iran)
M.Sc. Pharmaceutical Sciences Branch, Azad Univeristy, Tehran (Iran)

 

Mana was born in Ahvaz and raised in Tehran, Iran. She obtained her B.Sc in pure Chemistry at Kharazmi University.  After graduation, she continued her studies, completing an M.Sc in medicinal chemistry at the Pharmaceutical Sciences Branch of Azad University under the supervision of Prof. Solmaz Ghaffari, working on the preparation and optimization of new drug nanoformulations for the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis. After completing her degree, Mana worked in the R&D department at Kharazmi Pharmaceutical, an Iranian pharmaceutical company, before moving to the University of Windsor to pursue her PhD at the interface of organic chemistry and supramolecular chemistry as an Ontario Trillium  Scholar. Outside the lab, Mana likes exercising, walking, listening to music and watching movies. As a doctoral student in the Trant Team, Mana is working towards the desing and synthesis of new classes of self-immolative polymers for biomedical, drug delivery, and nanoelectronic applications.

 

Michael Reynolds

Doctoral Student
 

(2017-)

B.Sc. Wilfrid Laurier University
M.Sc. University of Windsor

Mike was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. He obtained his B.Sc in Chemistry at Wilfrid Laurier University in 2015 under the supervision of Prof. Ken Maly on the synthesis of dibenzopentacenequinones. He then moved to the university of Windsor to pursue his M.Sc in organic supramolecular chemistry under the supervision of Dr. Stephen Loeb working on the synthesis of photoswitchable crown ether macrocycles, defending his thesis in 2017. Outside the laboratory, Mike enjoys playing sports, going to the gym, watching movies and listening to music. As a doctoral student in the Trant group, Mike will be working on synthesizing and characterizing C-glycoside “acetal-free” carbohydrate mimics.

Sanaz Nadimi

Doctoral Student

(2019-)

B.Sc. University of Azarbaijan Shahid Madani, Tabriz, Iran
M.Sc. University of Tabriz, Iran

Sanaz was born and raised in Tabriz, Iran. She obtained her B.Sc in pure Chemistry at Azarbaijan Shahid Madani university. She then moved to the Tabriz University and completed her master’s degree in organic chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Kazem Dindarsafa, working on the synthesis of vinylsilanes from 4-dialkylaminobenzaldehydes and investigating their reactivity. After graduation, Sanaz worked as a teaching assistant at the prestigious Khalili Medical Sciences School in Tabriz. She then worked as a technical assistant at the PET Factory, Food and Drug Organization, before moving to the University of Windsor to pursue her PhD with Dr. Trant. She will be working on a combination of peptide and carbohydrate chemistry to develop new methods for peptide and carbohydrate cyclization. Outside the laboratory, Sanaz enjoys doing pilates, playing volleyball, listening to music and travelling.

Sarah Nasri

Doctoral Student

(2019-)

B.Sc. University of Windsor (Trant Team, 2016-2019)

Sarah was born in Pennsylvania, USA and raised in Sydney, Australia. She began her science studies at Granville TAFE aiming to become a Laboratory Technician. After the completion of her diplomas, she became more interested in creating knowledge than simply doing technique, which led her to enroll and complete her Honours Biochemistry with Thesis degree at the University of Windsor in 2019. Sarah has been involved with the Trant Team since its formation in September 2016, starting as a 2nd year volunteer working on self-immolative materials and endcaps. Her graduate research involves the development of innovative self-immolative polymers and thermally sensitive materials for use as novel functional nanomaterials and molecular templates. Outside of the lab, Sarah can be found drinking energy drinks and eating sunflower seeds while drawing pictures, editing videos, or sometimes playing Runescape. 

Samra Khan

Doctoral Student

(2020-)

B.Sc. The Women University Multan (Pakistan)
M.Sc. The Women University Multan (Pakistan)

Samra was born and raised in Multan, Pakistan. She obtained her BS and MPhil, majoring in Organic Chemistry, from The Women University Multan, Pakistan. Her Master’s thesis was supervised by Ms. Tahira Saleem (WUM), based on Natural Product and Medicinal studies where she explored the pharmacological potential of two ethnomedicinal Plants: Euphorbia Hirta and Euphorbia Prostrata. After her graduation she continued as a research associate with her master’s supervisor and expanded her work towards the synthesis of natural product-based nanomaterials. Samra shifted her focus towards organic synthesis and their medicinal properties when she joined research group of Prof. Dr. Zahid Shafique (Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan) in 2018. There, she contributed to projects on the design and development of inhibitors for α-Glycosidase, Urease, Cholinesterases and Carbonic Anhydrases. Most recently, Samra has been a visiting faculty member at the Department of Chemistry, The Women University Multan teaching organic chemistry courses. Her passion for cancer drug discovery inspired her to work with the Trant Team for her PhD research. Her doctoral research will combine total synthesis, biological evaluation and computational evaluation to generate a new generation of  anti-cancer compounds targeting an abnormal kinase. Outside of academia, Samra is an avid reader (only an occasional introvert), loves to watch Turkish historical dramas, and ‘tries’ to stay on top of her gym routine. She basically survives on Tea (pictured)! Good thing we have lots of kettles.

Sanam Mohammadzadeh

Doctoral Student

(2020-)

B.Sc. Molecular Genetic at Shahed University of Tehran/Iran
M.Sc. Biochemistry (computational Biologys approach ) at Shiraz
university/Iran

Azam (Sanam) Mohammadzadeh was born and raised In Behbahan (Khuzestan Province, Iran). She obtained her B.Sc. degree in genetics, during which she became heavily involved in an extracurricular collaboration with telecommunication engineering students, on a project that used her molecular genetics knowledge. From there she was hooked on interdisciplinary research, and especially on bioinformatics. With encouragement from her biophysics tutor, she chose to pursue computational biology for her MSc studies at the University of Shiraz, one of Iran’s leading institutions. It’s also where she fell in love with computational chemistry and structural biology. Her research focused on the analysis of lipids and membrane protein dynamics using computational methods. During her studies she taught biochemistry to undergraduate biology students; following graduation she took up a lectureship position at the University of Khatam where she taught pharmacological chemistry with a focus on lipid biochemistry. She has joined the Trant and Tong groups in 2020 https://www.tonglab.ca/ for her doctoral work where she will continue to work on protein dynamics, but will also do experimental structural biology using both X-ray crystallography and solution NMR. Outside the lab, she likes to play the harmonica, singing, listening to music (especially Persian classical music), and walking. She really loves camping and getting out in nature, and looks forward to exploring the Canadian wilderness.

Behzad Bolandi

Doctoral Student
(2020-)

B.Sc. Material Science and Engineering at the University of Tabriz (Iran)

M.Sc. Biomedical Engineering (Tissue Engineering) at Amirkabir University of Technology (Iran)

 

Born and raised in Tabriz-Iran, Behzad was always curious about science and engineering from an early age. He was recognized as an outstanding student and won several national prizes from the Iranian Ministry of Education while still in high school. While completing his undergraduate studies in Material Science and Engineering at the University of Tabriz, Behzad wasn’t busy enough, so he was actively involved in two startup-companies focusing on self-cleaning glasses and solar cells, inspiring a strong interest in entrepreneurship.

He was admitted to M.Sc. program in Biomedical Engineering (Tissue Engineering) in Amirkabir University of Technology, where his research focus was in developing injectable hydrogels for cartilage tissue engineering, which led to the publication of several articles and a book chapter.

During and after his master’s program, Behzad worked as the supervisor of the Tissue Engineering Lab and the Advanced Scaffold Lab at Amirkabir University of Technology, as well as at the Research Associate in Pasteur Institute of Iran. He continued his work as a postgraduate research and teaching assistant at AUT prior to moving to the University of Windsor to pursue his Ph.D. studies under the supervision of Prof. Trant.

Besides academic life, he enjoys adventuring, traveling, reading, watching movies, and playing volleyball, soccer and badminton.

Sama Dehghan

Doctoral Student
(2021-)

B.Sc. Tehran Azad University (Iran)

M.Sc. Zanjan University of Medical Sciences (Iran)


Sama grew up in Tehran, Iran but is originally from Urmia. Being obsessed with Science, Sama chose to study Microbiology as her bachelor’s degree in Tehran Azad University. Her efforts to continue education in this field resulted in being awarded a full scholarship for her master education in Food Microbiology in Zanjan University of Medical Science where she worked on worked on Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates harboring exotoxin genes in vegetables under supervision of Dr. Fakhri Haghi and Dr. Habib Zeighami winning the appreciated student of the year. Sama then went to University of Windsor to work on a variety of projects at the interface of biology, chemistry, and biochemistry with the Trant Team. If you can’t find her in the lab, she is probably instructing Pilates, doing Yoga, or spending her time with her husband watching films.

Atousa Ahmadi

Doctoral Student

(2021-)

B.Sc. (Industrial Management) – Allameh Tabataba’i University (Iran)

B.Sc. (Applied Chemistry) – IAU – Central Tehran Branch (Iran)

M.Sc. (Organic Chemistry) – IAU – Central Tehran Branch (Iran) (Iran)

Atousa was born in Ghaemshahr, Iran. After graduating from an undergraduate degree in industrial management, she decided to pursue her favorite field and returned for a second degree in Chemistry. By the time she finished her studies, she was already employed in the private sector. During her master’s degree, she became more interested in drug delivery systems and conducted her thesis work in Corticosteroid loaded Solid Lipid Nanoparticles (SLN).
Right after her graduation, she started to work at the Ebnesina Educational Center Laboratory as a lab expert and teaching assistant where she gained valuable and extensive experience in pathology, microbiology, and food chemistry science and student assessment. However, this didn’t fully scratch her itch for research and she chose to pursue a PhD with the Trant Team, where she will be working on medicinal and synthetic bioorganic chemistry.
Atousa is fond of cycling, watching movies, listening to music, painting, and she also likes animals, and voluntary work. She is also excited to move to Canada to learn French in the future!

Elham Pourian

Doctoral Student
 

(2021-)

B.Sc. Azad University, Tehran (Iran)

M.Sc. Iran Science and Technology University, Tehran (Iran)

Elham was born in Tehran and obtained her BSc in Applied Chemistry from IslamicAzad University (IAU) in Tehran. During her bachelor degree, she was a teachingassistant in inorganic chemistry and also worked at the Iranian Petroleum instituteworking with advanced instrumentation for oil and gas analysis. After her B.Sc., shedecided to pursue further studies with an MSc in Organic Chemistry at the IranScience and Technology University (IUST). She worked on various projects duringher degree (good preparation for the Trant Lab!), ranging from identifying toxicsubstances in meat to the synthesis of Nano particles. Her thesis focused on the useof nanobiocatalysts derived from the swim bladder of tropical fish, for the catalysisof the synthesis of pharmaceutical precursors. Following graduation she became ahigh school teacher to share her passion and knowledge of chemistry with students.But she missed the intellectual stimulation and challenges of research. She is veryexcited to join the Trant Team to learn, design, and discover new science and workwith all the other scientists in the group. Outside of science she loves swimming,basketball, watching English movies and listening to classical music.

Peihan Xu

Doctoral Student

(2020-)

Hazel was born and raised in Changsha, China. After spending nineteen years living in the same city, she decided to leave her hometown for university. She received her BSc in Bio-pharmaceutics from Tianjin Agricultural University (China) alongside with some lab work skills and interests in organic synthesis that led her to the Trant team. In her spare time, she enjoys movies, musicals, games, and chilling with her cat, Dafu (Chinese for ‘first officer’, named after Mr. Spock from Star Trek).

İrem Şimşek

Masters Student
(2021-)

BSc. Bilkent University

MSc. Izmir Biomedicine and Genome Institute

 

İrem was born in Ankara and grow up in Adana, Turkey. She obtained her B.Sc in Molecular Biology and Genetics at Bilkent University. After graduating, she immediately began her M.Sc. in the same field at Izmir Biomedicine and Genome Institute, working with Prof. Ralph Leo Meuwissen. Her research focused on basic molecular mechanisms and translational therapies against lung cancer using a mouse model and lung tissue and cells. After obtaining her M.Sc. degree, she started her post-academic career in a medical company as a product sales specialist in Istanbul. But she missed the bench. Giving up the bright lights of Istanbul, she is starting with the Trant Team in Fall 2021 to study autoimmune disease and cancer molecular biology. In her spare-time, she likes traveling, watching TV series, and listening to music.

Jhanielle James

Masters Student

(2022-)

Jhanielle is an ambitious, vibrant, female student who was born and raised in Negril, Jamaica and attended high school at the Hampton School for girls. While there, she was placed on the Honour Roll and upon graduation, was awarded top performance in Biology and Chemistry. She then moved to Canada and attended the University of Winnipeg and completed a BSc in Biochemistry. There, she started to gain her research experience by working as a research assistant in ecological biology and organic chemistry, while representing the university as a student ambassador. She completed her undergraduate thesis in natural product chemistry by conducting phytochemical studies on plant species. Currently, she is pursuing her MSc in Biochemistry under the supervision of Dr. Trant to extract, synthesize and utilize cannabinoids in medicine and the industry. In her free time she enjoys swimming and watching movies.

Mahasin Al-Shabi

Visiting Scholar
Formerly lecturer at the Universities of Al-Hamdaniya and Mosul in Iraq
(2019-)

B.Sc. University of Mosul (Iraq)
M.Sc. University of Mosul (Iraq)

Mahasin was born and grew up in Mosul, Iraq. She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry from the University of Mosul in 1987. Then, she was appointed to the same college as a research assistant. Later in 1994, she joined Dr. Mahdi Saleh’s group to get her Master’s degree in biochemistry in 1996, which focused on understanding the biochemical effects of some sedatives and tranquillizers in animals. Afterwards, she worked as an assistant professor of biochemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the College of Science at the same university. She published multiple research articles mainly in biochemistry and clinical chemistry focusing on the activity of natural products from Iraqi plants, and demonstrated their hypoglycemic modulatory effects on diabetes mellitus animal models. Other research interests included studying the effect of plant extracts on enzyme activity in in vivo assays, and on tissue-differential neurotransmitter activation, such as acetylcholinesterase, in mouse models. She also evaluated the antioxidant properties of plant extracts on mouse tissues. More recently she took a research sabbatical with Prof. Elke Richling at the Technische Universitat Kaiserslautern (Research University) in Germany. The research focused on the isolation, identification, and activity of secondary metabolites, especially flavonoids, from Prosopis fracta. Mahasin lectured at Mosul University from 1997 until 2011 when she was relocated to Al-Hamdaniya University, just outside of Mosul proper, because of the war that was hitting the area at that time. In her new position, her research focused on pollution and environmental issues. As the war got worse, she and her family relocated to Canada via Jordan in 2018. Clearly, throughout her entire research career, Mahasin has faced logistical difficulties that will not be present in her current appointment as a member of the Trant Team. Here in Windsor she is focusing on natural products chemistry examining understudied South African, Costa Rican, and Iraqi plants for bioactive materials. Mahasin is actively seeking opportunities in the private sector here in Windsor Essex with companies interested in natural products and extracts research. Outside of her academic life, Mahasin enjoys being with her family, cooking, walking and hiking in the outdoors.

Sara Alabed

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences
(Class of 2023)

Sara Alabed was born in Syria and raised in Saudi Arabia. Sara moved to Canada with her family. She joined The Team in her first year as an undergraduate student in 2020. She is currently studying biological sciences. In the Trant Team, she is working with Mana Dashti to create self-immolative polymers for drug’s applications. Sara is passionate about medical applications and would like to pursue a career in the medical field. Off campus, she enjoys spending time with family and friends. Sara loves exercising, swimming, and listening to music.

Victoria Kis

Undergraduate Volunteer
Health and Biomedical Sciences, Biochemistry
(Class of 2023)

Victoria Kis is an undergraduate student in Biology and Biochemistry (in Health and Biomedical Stream), set for graduation in 2023. Lover of sugars and coffee (but not together, she drinks her coffee black). If you ever see her in the research lab main office, she always has a pot on. If you ever walk past the blue lab and she is in, she’ll have her coffee mug outside the door for quick java refills. First generation Ukrainian, she’ll take whatever chance she can get to put her Ukrainian music on the lab speaker (whether the lab likes it or not). She loves travelling, dogs, long walks on the beach and breaking glassware. She wants to pursue a career in either Biochemistry Research or Gynaecology and Obstetrics.

She recommends visiting Cafe March 21 on Pelissier or Coffee Exchange on Ouellette , they’re close to the University and have the best pastries for exam season stress eating. 

Chelsea Ymana

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences
(Class of 2023)

Chelsea was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario and is currently studying Biochemistry. She works with John Hayward on his various projects and looks forward to learning more about the different branches of chemistry in her following years. On campus, Chelsea is apart of SMArt (Science Meets Art), an organization where she is able to work alongside faculty members at the University of Windsor to illustrate graphics for their next research publication. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, and training for her next marathon (you can find her struggling up a flight of stairs after leg day). She is a bubble tea enthusiast and highly recommends visiting Presotea, just two minutes from the University.

Noah Robinson

Undergraduate Volunteer
Integrative Biology

(Class of 2023)

Noah is currently a student at the University of Windsor studying Biological Sciences (Class of 2023). Born and raised in Windsor, he focuses on being a well-rounded individual, and currently volunteers on the University of Windsor’s medical response team to help the campus community stay happy and healthy throughout their usually stressful time at the University. He currently volunteers with the Trant Team doing organic chemistry with Sanaz Nadimi; he is getting overly familiar with amino acid protecting groups. His interests lie at the intersection of biomedical molecular sciences, human biology and clinical medicine.

Will Hosie

Undergraduate Volunteer
Chemistry
(Class of 2022)
Will Hosie was born in Commerce, Michigan but was raised in Windsor, Ontario. He is a chemistry student at the University of Windsor and joined the Trant Team in the Fall of his second year. He has a strong interest in organic chemistry especially regarding pharmaceuticals and medicines but also has interest in inorganic as well. As an undergraduate researcher working with the Trant Team, he works under Micheal Reynolds assisting with his various projects. He is also working as an author on The Handbook of Self-Immolative Polymers: Synthesis and Applications on Chapter 10: Self-immolation through hydrolysis of polyacetals. In his free time he enjoys playing the guitar, learning songs and writing tracks. He does music synthesis as well as organic synthesis.

Maria Rueda

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry
(Class of 2023)
Maria Rueda was born in Ottawa, Ontario. She lived in Concepción, Chile for some time as a young child and then moved to Windsor, Ontario. Maria is a student at the University of Windsor studying Biochemistry, and joined the Trant team in the fall of 2019 during her first year. She currently volunteers with Xiao (Dora) Yu, learning about organic and synthetic chemistry and helping her with her projects. Outside of research, she usually spends her time working as a lifeguard, with her family and friends, watching Netflix, and studying (obviously). She loves dolphins and travelling to new places!

Jason Wong

Undergraduate Volunteer
Health and Biomedical Sciences, Biochemistry
(Class of 2023)

Jason Wong is currently a student in the Biomedical Science program born and raised in Windsor Ontario. He currently assists Sarah Nasari with her many projects (and many TLC’s). He is excited to learn more about organic reactions in future courses. Outside of lab activities, he is part of science society and plays lots of league of legends in his free time. He recommends grabbing a sub from Giglios whenever you are near campus.

Ryan Salama

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences
(Class of 2023)

Of Lebanese background, Ryan was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario, and is Currently studying Biological Sciences as an undergraduate student at the University of Windsor (Class of 2023!). Ryan has found himself volunteering for the Trant team, working alongside Dr. Ronnie Banerjee in Cannabis research. He enjoys learning, and is always finding new ways to challenge himself. such as participating in a chemistry conference within his first year as an undergraduate! He is excited, and ready for the many opportunities which are to come his way!

Maria Meer

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences
(Class of 2023)
Maria Meer is an undergraduate student studying in the Biomedical Science field and set to graduate in 2023. She is currently working with Dora in the Trant lab that she joined during her first year. Science has been her passion since a very young age therefore, she aspires to pursue a career in medicine. Outside of school, she loves to shop, play soccer and travel.

Jessica Dennison

Undergraduate Volunteer
Chemistry

(Class of 2023)

Jessica was born and raised in Amherstburg, Ontario, just outside of Windsor. After finishing high school, she is currently enrolled as a chemistry major at the University of Windsor where she joined the Trant Team for research after her second year: COVID really put a damper on plans to get involved earlier! She’s most interested in organic synthesis and is considering future studies while she does research in the lab, starting with making triggerable release drug conjugates. Outside of school, and in her free time, Jess is a board member for the “Friends of Ojibway Prairie” and enjoys cycling, drinking tea, and watching rom-coms.

Sahana Kalidindi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biological Sciences

(Class of 2024)

Sahana has just started her studies of Biological Sciences at the University of Windsor. As a member of Trant team, she is very enthusiastic to become more experienced by entering the labs and learn new things as she did not have the chance before because of the pandemic and online learning. In her free time, she likes to bike, swim, and read.

Fadi Naom

Outstanding Scholar
Biochemistry
(Class of 2022)
Fadi is currently a second year Outstanding Scholar at the University of Windsor studying Integrative Biology. He has an interest in applying chemistry research to investigate and seek solutions to scientific questions in the field of biology. In his spare time, he enjoys playing basketball and chess.

Isaac Gagnier

Undergraduate Volunteer
Chemistry & Mathematics

(Class of 2024)

Isaac is an undergraduate student who joined the Trant team in the Fall of 2021. He began his journey as a Biomedical Sciences major but has recently switched into Honours Chemistry. Isaac enjoys learning organic chemistry techniques from his mentor Dina and is excited to dive deeper into the field! Along with organic chemistry, Isaac also enjoys mathematics and problem-solving. In his free time, Isaac likes golfing, solving Rubik’s cubes, and watching movies. Isaac enjoys his time in the lab and is looking forward to future projects with the Trant Team!

Jaxon Laramie

Undergraduate Volunteer
Integrative Biology

(Class of 2024)

Jaxon Laramie is from Amherstburg, and is studying integrative biology at the University of Windsor. He joined the Trant lab to do chemistry, of all things, in his second year. He has a passion for learning about science and I enjoy problem solving. In his free time he likes being active: he golfs, watches football, and plays games of pick-up basketball with friends.

Chitra Bidlon

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biological Sciences

(Class of 2024)

Chitra Bidlon was born in India and moved to Canada when she was one. She moved around quite a bit but has lived in Windsor since 2008. She joined Trant Team in 2018 while in high school and she is currently a 2ndyear biological sciences student working under the supervision of Sarah Nasri. Her favourite part about working in Trant Team is the passion, creativity, and teamwork behind all the work we do that gives rise to lots of very cool research! Her research interest falls within the intersection of chemistry and biology for the development of new and fascinating drugs for more innovative therapies with various medical applications, a field she hopes to contribute to. She has spent some time working on self- immolative polymers and is currently focusing on a project involving solid phase synthesis. Outside of the lab, she enjoys reading, biking, swimming, and spending time with her friends and family.

Sophia Campana

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences (Health Stream)

(Class of 2024)

Sophia is an undergraduate student in Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences (Health Stream), set to graduate in 2024. She joined the Trant Team as a part of the Outstanding Scholars Program in the fall of 2021, and is currently working under her mentor, Hazel. She is looking forward to her future with the Trant Team and is eager to see herself progress as a researcher in the upcoming years. She is a volunteer at Windsor Regional Hospital and has previously volunteered in the eye surgery and dialysis units. In her free time, Sophia enjoys baking, going for walks, spending time with her friends, and making frequent trips to Starbucks.

Adam Salloum

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biological Sciences

(Class of 2024)

Adam Salloum was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. He is currently studying biological sciences at the University of Windsor. Adam joined the Trant team in the fall of 2021 through the Outstanding Scholars program. Adam undergoes research with his mentors Sarah Nasri and Dr. Shahbazi. Adam has high interest in the field of organic chemistry. During his free time Adam loves to play basketball, soccer, travelling and the outdoors. Upon finishing his degree Adam hopes to attend medical school.

Deya’a Almasri

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2024)

Deyaa was born in Jordan, but grew up and spent most of his time here in Windsor, Ontario. He is a 2nd-year Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences student at the University with hopes of going to graduate school afterward. He enjoys the problem-solving aspect of research and is excited to conduct work. In his free time, he enjoys watching and playing soccer with friends, or reading and learning new skills when he is by himself.

Mohamad El Mais

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biological Sciences

(Class of 2024)

Mohamad is a Canadian-Lebanese living in Windsor. He is a Biological Sciences student at the University Of Windsor. Mohamad joined Trantteam in the fall of 2021. He works with his mentors Sanaz Nadimi and Mana Dashti. He is very interested in the field of organic chemistry. During his free time, he enjoys playing soccer, traveling, and exploring the nature. He really enjoys organic chemistry and his main goal after graduating is to attend Medical School. 

Teagan Kukhta

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2025)

Teagan was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario and is currently studying Biomedical Science at the University of Windsor. He likes living a balanced lifestyle and takes the time out to do the things he loves like running and swimming, and working at the local animal shelter. He wishes to pursue a medical research career after his post-secondary education.

Laith Almasri

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2025)

Laith Almasri is a Palestinian-Canadian enrolled in the Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences program at the University of Windsor. He joined the TrantTeam in his first year, interested in integrating biological notions with chemistry and curious about the “whys” of the world. As an Outstanding Scholar candidate, Laith is determined to assist in the team’s contributions. He is currently an executive at Students Take Initiative, which supports secondary school immigrants in transitioning effectively into Canada. Ultimately, he wishes to reciprocate the kindness and opportunity the community gave him. During free time, Laith can be seen learning to code and playing games.

Dami Babs-Olorunfemi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Nursing

(Class of 2025)

Dami grew up in Lagos, Nigeria and is currently working towards her BScN at the University of Windsor. Moving to Canada stirred up her inquisitiveness and introduced her to a love of learning. Her interest in research stems from the belief that it fuels innovation. Some of her other interests are recreating performances from her favorite musicals, organizing her environment and reading memoirs.

Nerojini Nehruji

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biological Sciences

(Class of 2025)

Nerojini joined the Outstanding Scholars in her first year of undergrad studying biology. She joined Trant Team the same year. She likes to explore new places and try different types of food. Nerojini hopes to pursue a profession within the medical field.

Alex Stoinescu

Undergraduate Volunteer
Department of Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2025)

Alex Stoinescu was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She is currently studying Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences (Class of 2025). In the Trant team, Alex has begun exploring computational chemistry with Aziz Abu-Saleh and is very excited to experience all roles within a lab whether that be hands-on experimental work or through the computer. Alex enjoys putting all of her free time (and her paychecks) to her horse (okay maybe it would be more accurate to say pony) named Masie. Although Masie is small, she should not be underestimated, have you ever heard the saying ponies are always the worst troublemakers? Believe it. Some cheaper pass times Alex enjoys is music and visual arts, that includes most music genres and most mediums of art, respectfully leaving out country music and oil pastels. In the future, Alex would like to pursue a career in Dermatology.

Kaitlin Ferraro

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2026)

Kaitlin is a first year Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences student.  In her first year she joined the Trant Team to gain valuable research experience and learn more about chemistry, and its relation to medicine.  She is passionate about medical science and would like to pursue a career in the medical field.  She is eager to combine her love for chemistry and problem solving in the lab.  She is also excited to learn from Dr. Trant, postdoctoral, doctoral, and masters researchers, and her fellow undergraduate volunteers.  In her free time, She enjoys reading, going for runs, playing soccer, trying new foods, spending time with family, and visiting new places. 

Jonathan Houser

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry

(Class of 2026)

Jonathan was born in British Columbia. He moved to Windsor in 2016 and joined the Trant team summer of 2022. He has an interest in organic chemistry and molecular biology. Jonathan is currently a national level gymnast and is on his way to become world class athlete. In his free time Jonathan likes to hang out with friends, read and travel. Jonathan would like to go into a career with pharmaceutical or drug design and hopes to make a big impact on the world.

Jaden Burke

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2026 )

Jaden Burke is an undergraduate student studying in the Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences program and is set to graduate in 2026. She was born in and raised in Windsor-Essex County and attends the University of Windsor. Jaden joined Trent Labs in first year and aspires a career in pharmacy. She has always been passionate about science growing up, but now has a profound interest in topics surrounding chemistry. Outside of the lab, she volunteers for her local hospital, is part of The Science Society and loves weightlifting.  

Treasure Moriyo

Undergraduate Volunteer
Medical Physics

(Class of 2027)

Treasure Moriyo is a South Sudanese and Ugandan Canadian born and raised in Windsor. She is an undergraduate student studying Medical Physics at the University of Windsor. Joining the Trant Team in her first year, Treasure is interested in computational chemistry and its application to drug design. In her free time, she enjoys playing basketball, reading, and trying out new recipes.

Liz Sylvestre

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2027 )

Liz Sylvestre is an undergraduate student in her first year in the Biomedical sciences program. Liz joined this team in October of 2022. Liz has an interest in perusing the medical field after getting her undergraduate degree, specifically, cardiology and surgery specialties. Liz loves organic chemistry and working hands on. She’s very excited to be working in a lab, gaining experience, and learning a variety of new things. Liz is excited to discover all the potential that chemistry has to offer the field of medicine.  In her free time Liz loves baking, soccer, seeing her friends, running, shopping and getting coffee.

Connor Filiault

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2027 )

Connor was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario and is currently studying Biomedical Sciences. He is beginning his research experience early in his first year of undergraduate as a volunteer. Connor aspires to use this year of volunteering to learn as much as possible about the different aspects and research topics in the Trant Lab. Where he can then apply what he has learned in future years with more specific research focuses. He has an interest in organic and synthetic chemistry, aspiring to help make new discoveries. Outside of research, Connor enjoys socializing with friends, weight training and writing music.

Vivian Peng

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry

(Class of 2027 )

Vivian is an undergraduate student studying Biochemistry at the University of Windsor. She joined the Trant team in order to pursue her passion in biochemical and chemical research and to learn more about the research experience as a whole. She has an interest in problem-solving and especially wants to contribute to advancing our healthcare system through new discoveries. In her free time, Vivian enjoys drawing, going on nature walks, and getting bubble tea with friends.

 

Julia Rubino

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry & Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2027 )

Julia is a first year Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences student. Julia joined the Trant team in fall of her first year to meet likeminded people, earn invaluable experience in a lab and gain lots of hands-on chemistry and biology experience. Julia has in interest in pursuing medicine after completing her undergraduate degree. She looks forward to studying organic chemistry as well as biomedicine. She is also excited to learn from Dr. Trant, and other researchers in the lab. In her free time Julia enjoys swimming, reading, travelling, spending time with family and friends, and enjoying the outdoors. 

Joseph O’Neil

Undergraduate Volunteer
Neuroscience

(Class of 2027 )

Joseph O’Neil is a first-year neuroscience student and Outstanding Scholar. He joined the Trant lab intending to learn a variety of lab related skills which will allow him to prosper as he moves forward with his academic journey towards one day attending medical school. Specifically, he one day hope to become a psychiatrist. He is especially interested in organic chemistry and neurobiology. In his free time, he enjoys volunteering, travelling, and playing soccer. In joining the Trant lab, he looks forward to improving his lab skills, learning new things, and meeting new people!

Sofia Milicia

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences

(Class of 2027 )

Sofia is currently studying Biomedical Sciences at the University of Windsor, joining the team in her first year. She is interested in obtaining valuable hands-on experience and utilizing her problem-solving skills while also exercising her passion for math and science. Sofia hopes to pursue a career in the medical field after obtaining her undergraduate degree. While academia is crucial to Sofia, she also values her free time, in which she enjoys reading, doing puzzles, listening to music, and spending time with her friends and family.

Ayesha Sayyeda

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry

(Class of 2025)

Ayesha Sayyeda was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario and is currently studying biochemistry. Ayesha joined the Trant Team in the fall of 2021 during her first year through the Chemistry Research Internship Program. She is working alongside Mana and Sanaz in the lab, helping them with their projects. Outside of school, she loves travelling, spending time with her family and friends and going on walks outdoors.

Madison Beltran

High-School Volunteer

(Aug 2022 – Present)

Madison was born in Windsor, ON and is a senior at Ste. Anne’s High School in Lakeshore. She has always had a keen interest in pursuing a career in pediatric medicine. Madison enjoys chemistry as well as biochemistry and is excited to work with Dr. Trant and his team. She brings an interesting skillset to the table including bilingualism, a sailing instructor, advocate for Canadian veterans, athlete, and musician (drums, piano, and guitar). Additionally, her student senate role with WECDSB allows her the ability to practice her leadership skills and make tangible improvements to student life. She is an active advocate within her school and community and sees this opportunity as an additional approach to assist others. Her future career aspirations have led to an acute fascination for research that is deeply rooted in furthering the role of science in our lives. She is a firm believer in kindness and the role it plays in our world.

“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless” – Mother Teresa

Imran Ahmad Khan

Research Staff
 

(2021-)

BSc, University of Education Lahore (Pakistan)

Imran was born and raised in Multan, Pakistan. He obtained his bachelor’s in Business Administration from University of Education Lahore Pakistan. Imran had the fortune to test the waters in many endeavours in past 10 years, from entrepreneurial to management related jobs. He finds that management sciences are at heart of any successful operation may it be STEM or corporate. And so, with the TrantTeam, he is sharpening his analytical and problem-solving skills while assisting the brilliant scientists at TrantTeam, Imran likes to play cricket and online strategic games.

Saeed Velayati

Research Staff
 

(2021-)

BSc, Azad University Tehran North-Branch (Iran)

MBA, Industrial Management Institute (Iran)

Born and raised in Tehran, Iran, Saeed has completed his BSc. in Microbiology and he continued his professional life mostly on data, management, and business analysis. 

Saeed has worked in different industries for 12 years and the best asset he has gained in all those years is his unstoppable attitude towards finding solutions to have things done. Problem-solving and time-management are the skills he tries to improve all the time, and he hopes, while in Trant team, he can make sure the labs work smoothly and as organized and safe as possible utilizing these skills.

Saeed becomes excited about data analysis, so you can find him digging into some dataset whenever he gets the chance. If you cannot find him in the labs, he might be partying with friends, enjoying films, music, running, or cooking a new recipe.

Angela Mulcaster

Research Staff
 

(2022-)

St. Clair College, Windsor, Ontario Chemical Laboratory Technician
St. Clair College, Windsor, Ontario Pre- Health Science
Sheridan College, Oakville, Ontario Retail Management

Angela was born and raised on the shores of Lake Erie. In her youth, she would visit family on Pelee Island, at Canada’s most southern tip; instilling in her the importance of the water quality of the Great Lakes and a curiosity for Oenology. This led Angela to complete the Chemical Laboratory Technology program through St.Clair College focusing on phosphate and nitrogen enriched surface water runoff from agricultural lands. Angela has spent the past several years at the largest private estate winery in Canada working with winemakers Walter Schmoranz and Martin Janz in the analytical lab of Pelee Island Winery; responsible for the quality control analysis from grape to bottle. She is excited to be joining the Trant Team in the Wine and Spirits Lab to continue her journey in wine. In her free time, Angela can be found in her gardens, cycling the trails of Essex County or sipping a glass of vino by the fire.

Aiyireti (Dina) Dilinaer

Undergradaute Volunteer
(Biochemistry)

(Class of 2022)

Dina was born and raised in Urumqi, China. She is a Biochemistry student at the University of Windsor. She has a general interest for organic chemistry and is still finding her specific interests in organic chemistry. But she likes organic chemistry. Which is a good fit with the Trant Team! As an undergraduate researcher in the Trant Team, she is working with Michael Reynolds and various projects he conducts. In her spare time she likes to travel, paint, watch movies and cook. She is also passionate about horseback riding. 

Dr. Seyedeh Maryamdokht (Nazanin) Taimoory
Postdoctoral Researcher

(2016-)

B.Sc. Tehran Azad University (Iran)
M.Sc. Sharif University of Technology (Iran)
Ph.D. Brock University

Nazanin was born in Sari, Iran and raised in the capital, Tehran. She obtained her B.Sc. in pure chemistry from Tehran Azad University, North Branch and her Master’s degree in organic chemistry from Sharif University of Technology, an internationally renowned research institution, with Prof. Firouz Matloubi Moghaddam. Her research focused on the synthesis and identification of novel heterocyclic compounds of potential biological interest. After graduation, she was involved in numerous collaborations at different universities working on different research projects preparing chemicals with unique physical properties. She also lectured at Payam Nour University of Tehran and Azad University of Varamin, Iran. She then moved to Canada where she did her Ph.D. in organic chemistry as a Trillium Ontario Scholar at Brock University with Prof. Travis Dudding. Her doctoral work in computational modeling examined various chemical and organic molecules and studied the precise mechanism of asymmetric processes. These advanced quantum mechanical methods were used to provide mechanistic insight into the chemical reactivity and selectivity of host-guest hydrogen bonded complex molecules and catalytic systems. As a member of the Trant Team, she will be primarily working on designing novel artificial amino acids using in silico techniques and synthesizing these materials to develop a new class of therapeutics for auto-immune disorders

Mohamad Rasizadeh

Research Staff
 

(2019-2021)

A.S. Xazar University, Baku, Azerbaijan

Born and raised in Tehran, Iran. He obtained his A.S. in Chemical and Petroleum Engineering in 2005 at Xazar University in Baku. After completing his studies, Mohammad worked in multitude of companies as a member of supply chain management team where his job was mainly focused on maximizing the process efficiency and productivity. In the Trant group he is assisting with the analytical instrumentation and making sure the lab is running smoothly. He enjoys playing and watching soccer.

Xiao (Dora) Yu

Masters Student

(2018-)

B.Sc. Nanjing Technical University (China)

Dora was born and raised in Ningxia, China. She obtained her B.Sc in chemistry from the college of Chemistry and Molecular Engineering of Nanjing Tech University in China in 2018 where she conducted research in synthetic biology and applied inorganic materials chemsitry. Outside the laboratory, Xiao enjoys running and playing other sports. She is a great cook and if she has some leisure time, she will cook some Chinese food for herself and her friends. As a graduate student in the Trant group, Xiao will be working on preparing innovative self-immolative polymers and stimuli-triggerable materials.

Seyed (Iraj) Sadraei 

Doctoral Student

(2016-2020)

Tehran Azad University (Iran)
M.Sc. Saveh University (Iran)
M.Sc. Brock University
Ph.D. University of Windsor

Iraj was born and raised in the northern Iranian city of Sari. He obtained his B.Sc. in applied chemistry from the School of Science of Tehran Azad University, North Branch. He then moved to the School of Science Azad University, Saveh Branch where he completed his Master’s degree in organic chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Seyed Sadjadi on the synthesis of oxadiazole derivatives and their biological applications. After graduation, he was involved in numerous collaborations with different industrial organizations and universities and working jointly with industry and academia on various research projects. He then moved to Canada where he received his second Master’s degree in organometallic chemistry in the laboratory of Prof. Costa Metallinos at Brock University. His research was focused on the experimental development of organometallic homo- and hetero-coupling reactions and studying the origins of selectivity in lithiations. Outside the laboratory, Iraj enjoys playing a multitude of sports, listening to music and watching movies. As a doctoral student in the Trant group, Iraj will be working on synthesizing physiologically stable “acetal-free” carbohydrates, compounds that replace the natural sugar residues with a combination of carbasugars and C-glycosides, for use as long-lasting therapeutics, vaccines, diagnostic probes, and biological labels.

Samaneh Mehri

Masters Student

(2019-2021)

B.Sc. Tehran Azad University (Iran)
M.Sc. Tabriz University of Medical Science (Iran)
M.Sc. University of Windsor

Samaneh was born and raised in Tehran, Iran. Then she won a national science prize in high school, and that set her career path! She earned her B.Sc in Microbiology at Tehran Azad University. She then pursued an masters degree in medical bacteriology at the Tabriz University of Medical Sciences. There she studied the selective emergence of virulence genes in MDR UPEC isolated from patients with renal failure diseases under the supervision of Prof. Mohammadreza Nahaei in collaboration with the Chronic Kidney Disease Research Centre of Tabriz. Following her masters work she worked as a research associate at the Molecular Genetic Department of Kasra Hospital in Tehran, helping to establish a new facility, and then started a new career as an industrial R&D consultant and medical representative at the Poober company. Samaneh has now moved to the University of Windsor to begin her MSc with Dr. Trant and the team where she is working on a number of projects at the interface of chemistry, biology, and engineering. Outside of her academic life, Samaneh spends most of her time traveling with her husband, swimming, and watching films and live theater.

Susanna Vu

Masters Student

(2020-)

Susanna was born in Toronto and raised in Vancouver. She obtained her B.Sc. in Chemistry at Ryerson University, where she completed her undergraduate thesis involving the synthesis of antimicrobial polymers to investigate mechanisms of bacteria. She is now pursuing her M.Sc. under co-supervision with the Trant Team and the Rondeau-Gagné Group to create degradable, wearable, self-healing organic circuitry. Outside of the lab, Susanna enjoys travelling and loves hanging out with her dogs.

Paul Tucci

Research Staff
 

(2020-)

B.Sc University of Windsor, Windsor

Paul was born in St. Catharines, Ontario and grew up in Windsor. He completed his Honours Forensic Science with a chemistry specialization degree at the University of Windsor in 2018 with the aims of working as an analytical chemist in the forensic field. After a year of working as a quality control technician, he made the decision to re-enroll at uWindsor in pursuit of a masters degree and joined the Trant Team in (September 2020?) working as an analytical research assistant after gaining interest in organic chemistry in his return to school. Outside of academia he enjoys drinking espresso, writing and playing music, and playing Destiny.

Jonathan Chiaramonte

(2018 – 2019)

Jonathan was born in Windsor and grew up in Owen Sound before coming back to the University of Windsor for his B.Sc. in Biochemistry (2014-2019). His undergraduate research includes a year volunteering for Dr. Koschinsky and Dr. Boffa under the supervision of Dr. Scipione. He then joined Dr. Trant’s research group in organic synthesis (2018), specifically working towards the synthesis of “acetal-free” carbohydrates (2018-19). His undergraduate research included the synthesis of a glucose bio-probe, which can be used to monitor malignant cells due to their preference for aerobic glycolysis. The second project in Jonathan’s undergraduate research dealt with the induction of asymmetry in the Diels-Alder reaction – a possible avenue towards the synthesis of “acetal-free” carbohydrate mimics. His graduate work focused on further developing these technologies to generate innovative cancer vaccines. Outside the lab, Jonathan’s interests included various sports, pharmacology, toxicology, and drug design. Jonathan passed away in an accident on New Year’s Day 2020. Jon was an exceptonally promising researcher and we were both extremely excited about his progress and the new projects he was taking on. He will be greatly missed by all of us in the Team. His work and contributions to the group during his time with us are honoured and will be remembered.

Carmen Ly

Outstanding Scholar
ChemBioChem

(2017 – 2020)

Carmen Ly was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She has recently completed her undergraduate studies in Biochemistry (Class of 2020). Carmen joined the Trant Team in the Fall of 2017 and has been working with Mana Dashti on the projects she conducts, mainly being Mana’s self-immolative polymer project. Outside of the lab, Carmen is also an SOS tutor and OS peer mentor. In her free time, she enjoys baking, eating out with friends, and sleeping.

Victoria Grandi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Forensic Science – Molecular Biology and Bichemistry

(2018 – 2020)

Victoria Grandi was born and raised in Windsor, ON. She joined the Trant Team in early 2018 during her second year of a Forensic Science undergraduate degree with a specialty in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry. Currently, she is working on her undergraduate thesis using computational chemistry to study the interactions between major and minor cannabinoids and various central nervous system receptors. As well, she is a co-author of a cannabis review article to be published soon. Victoria loves being involved on campus, where she is the President of the Forensic Student Association, a Forensics TA, and SOS tutor. Outside of school, she can be found coaching competitive gymnastics, playing travel soccer, or volunteering at Hospice.

P.S. Currently at Medical School, University of British Columbia.

Joy-Lynn Kobti

Undergraduate Volunteer
ChemBiochem

(2017 – 2020)

Joy-Lynn Kobti was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined the Trant Team in the summer of 2017 after completing her first year of a Biochemistry undergraduate degree, and is currently working on her undergraduate thesis solving the secrets of selective acetate deprotection under the supervision of Iraj and Dr. Trant. Outside of the lab, Joy is incredibly involved where she serves as President of the University of Windsor Science Society among a whole list of other accomplishments. Off campus, she works as a lifeguard and really enjoys teaching swimming lessons to children.  In her limited spare time, she also enjoys watching movies and spending time with friends and family. 

P.S. Current Position: Graduate Student in the Vukotic Lab, University of Windsor

Emma Dennison

Outstanding Scholar
ChemBiochem

(2017 – 2021)

Emma Dennison was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined the Trant Team in the summer of 2017 before even starting her BSc in Biochemistry, through the Chemistry Research Internship Program. She became an outstanding scholar in 2018 entering her second year and has held two NSERC USRA summer scholarship awards, after her first and second years. Her specific research interest is in physical organic chemistry, investigating the Diels-Alder reaction for a new system of compounds to develop thermally-sensitive end-caps but she has done a lot of supramolecular chemistry too. Besides research, she enjoys volunteering with palliative patients at the hospital, dance, running, travelling and spending time with my family. We are probably going to lose her to medical school, but you never know!

P.S. Currently Medical Student, Queen’s Univeristy

Sabrina Piazza

Outstanding Scholar
ChemBiochem

(2017 – 2021)

Sabrina Piazza was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined the Trant Team in the fall of 2017 as a first year undergraduate student studying Biochemistry. She became an Outstanding Scholar upon entering second year and received an NSERC USRA the following summer. She will be travelling to Strasbourg, France with MITACS to take part in Origins of Life Research with Dr. Joseph Moran soon. In the Trant Team, Sabrina is working with Michael Reynolds towards the synthesis the natural Tn antigen for anti-cancer vaccine studies. Aside from research, Sabrina enjoys doing yoga, swimming, skiing, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. 

P.S. Currently at Pharmacy School, University of British Columbia

Khushali Parikh

Outstanding Scholar
Biological Sciences/Psychology – Neuroscience

(2018 – 2021)

Khushali was born in Mumbai, India. She has moved around quite a bit, living in Mississauga and North Carolina before moving to Windsor in 2010. She is now a Neuroscience student at the University of Windsor. She first joined the Trant Team in 2018 and is currently working as a Carbohydrate Chemist on the project t-Butylamine as a “New” Agent for Mild and Selective Deacetylation under the supervision of Iraj. Outside of school, she loves art which includes both drawing and photography. She has a HUGE sweet tooth so a place she would recommend is Waterfront Ice Cream!

P.S. Currently Graduate Student, Bain Group, University of Windsor

Sara Knezevic

Undergraduate Volunteer
Molecular Bio and Biotech

(2018 – 2021)

Sara Knezevic was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined Trant Team in the summer of 2018 after her first year as an undergraduate student studying Biology. In Trant Team, she is currently working with Samaneh Mehri on a project pertaining to gene expression involving autoimmune diseases. She has a strong research interest in microbiology, and, last year, worked on a project focusing on bacterial biotransformation of catechol as an anti-diabetic. In her free time, she enjoys rock climbing, travelling, playing the piano and spending time with family and friends. She plans to study towards a degree in microbiology and immunology in graduate school.  


P.S. Graduate Student in the D’Costa Group, University of Ottawa

Lavleen Mader

Outstanding Scholar
ChemBioChem

(2018 – 2021)

Lavleen was born and raised in Windsor, ON and is currently studying Biochemistry at the University of Windsor. She joined the Trant Team in the summer of 2018 upon becoming an Outstanding Scholar. She has received two NSERC USRA scholarships in the following two summers. In general, she is interested in synthetic organic chemistry involving total synthesis, supramolecular complexes, as well as drug design/delivery. In the Trant Team, she works with John Hayward and focuses on the synthesis of novel resorcinarenes. Upon graduation she hopes to pursue graduate studies in organic chemistry. Outside of the lab she enjoys playing guitar, basketball, reading, and coffee (with milk and no sugar, in case anyone wants to buy her one).

P.S. Graduate Student, Keillor Group, University of Ottawa

Maria Buglisi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Chemistry

(2018 – 2021)

Maria Buglisi was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined Trant Team midway through her first year in 2018. She is currently in her third year of her BSc in Chemistry with a minor in French. Maria’s general research interest is in inorganic chemistry, and is currently working with Dr. Ronnie Banerjee on the synthesis of contrast agents for MRIs and fluorescence imaging. Outside of research, Maria works at Starbucks and is involved in many clubs on campus, including being the VP Communications for Science Society, an SOS volunteer and in Delta Zeta Sorority. In her free time, she enjoys reading, doing yoga, and spending time with her friends!

P.S. Current at Walmart Canada

Teodora Secara

Outstanding Scholar
ChemBiochem

(2017 – 2021)

Teodora Secara was born in Cugir, Romania and immigrated to Windsor, Ontario in 2002. She joined the Trant Team in the summer of 2017 before beginning her undergraduate degree in Interdisciplinary Arts and Science, with a major in Biochemistry. She became an outstanding scholar in 2018 and has held two Ignite-Work Study placements, after her first and second years of study. She will be starting her fourth year as a researcher with the Trant Team, and has worked on multiple research projects throughout the years. Mostly recently, she worked on an independent project focused on the optimization of thioester bond formation reactions. She has also worked in other areas, such as developing thermally-sensitive end-caps through the application of Diels-Alder reactions. She is planning on starting her undergraduate thesis as she enters her fourth year of study. Besides research, Teodora enjoys event planning (especially for Trant Team related events), hosting fundraisers, running (currently training for a half-marathon), travelling, cooking and spending time with her friends and family. She looks forward to continuing her research as a graduate student in the future.

P.S. Current Position: MSc Medical Science, University of Toronto

Nour Elkott

Undergraduate Volunteer
Computer Science

(2018 – 2021)

Nour ElKott was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. She joined the Trant Team during the fall of her first year as an undergraduate Computer Science student. In the Trant Team, Nour is working with Dr. Nazanin Taimoory to model, analyze, and compute molecular data using molecular modeling environments.
Outside of school, Nour can be found at her job tutoring math for kids and volunteering at different organizations. In her spare time, she likes to read, paint and bake.

P.S. Currently at AI Software Development Intern, Utah, USA

Chloe Dickson

Undergraduate Volunteer
Behaviour, Cognition, and Neuroscience

(2021 – 2022)

Chloe Dickson was born and raised in Windsor, ON and is currently an undergraduate student studying Behaviour, Cognition, and Neuroscience at the University of Windsor.  Chloe is a coffee and oat milk enthusiast and wants to pursue a career as a Physician Assistant. Outside of the lab, Chloe works at the movie theatre and enjoys playing the piano, travelling, and spending lots of time with her sister’s dog, Lilo.

Abdulrahman Aljoudi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biochemistry

(2018 – 2022)

Abdulrahman is originally from Homs, Syria and was born and raised in Abu-Dhabi, UAE. He moved to Windsor, Ontario in December, 2014 and now he is a Biochemistry student at the University of Windsor. He enjoys learning about organic/synthetic chemistry, especially studying about new synthetic pathways or approaches to different compounds. During his free time, he is a pediatric volunteer at the Windsor Regional hospital where he enjoys entertaining young children and adults, also he loves spending time with family and friends and solving mathematical problems. Outside of the lab, he is a swimmer, diver, coffee (not tea) drinker, jogger, and maybe a joker.

Alden “A.J.” Villas

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biomedical Sciences

(2021 – 2022)

Alden “A.J.” Villas was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. Currently, he is studying Biomedical Sciences at the University of Windsor with further aspirations
to pursue a medical career post-graduation. He is especially interested in organic chemistry, and loves to learn new things that he can use to assist others.
Outside of the lab, A.J. can be found online, either playing video games or reading up on the latest news from around the world.

Keith Wong

Undergraduate Volunteer
Integrative Biology

(2019 – 2022)

Keith Wong was born and raised in Windsor, Ontario. He is currently studying Integrative Biology (Class of 2023). In the Trant Team, he is working with Daniel Meister on a series of different projects, and is extremely excited to continue to learn about organic chemistry in the future, both in courses and as part of the lab. In his free time, Keith enjoys reading classic books and watching critically acclaimed films. He recommends eating at Mazaar if you are visiting Windsor. 

Moutasem Seifi

Undergraduate Volunteer
Biology

(2021 – 2022)